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Archive for June, 2012

Seconds count

Rachel Comey’s online sale ends at midnight. Go buy yourself a nice dress or something.

Posted on June 26th, 2012

Two stores: one great, one irksome

So I’m going to just have to go ahead and call bullshit on Colette, guys. I know it’s the grande dame of concept stores, but just because you were the first at something doesn’t mean you remain the best at something, and my visit yesterday made me feel as though I was making my way through a over-crowded super-fashion theme park.* It’s not like there isn’t fantastic stuff to look at, because there’s plenty, but it’s all crazy expensive, which doesn’t make it feel incredibly relevant to this moment in time, or all that imaginative. The collaborations they’re so famous for feel strained to me. I think we can all agree that the world already has more than enough Kaws t-shirts, no?

 

I love love loved Merci, however.** Isn’t it nice when a person, place or thing not only meets your expectations but exceeds them?

*Seriously: I had just come from the Louvre, and Colette was more jammed.

**More later, I promise.

 

Posted on June 26th, 2012 11 Comments

Morning links

  • The pictures in this men’s fashion week photo portfolio might have you wondering if Zoolander was a documentary. (The Moment)
  • Likewise, it’s hard to believe that this footage of a bride singing “The Right Man” by Christina Aguilera to her groom as she walks down the aisle (with a mic as her bouquet, natch) isn’t actually from a movie.
  • Veronique Branquinho is back (WWD)
  • I’m not quite sure why this is the particular moment everyone woke up to Aaron Sorkin’s artistic blind spots, but it is producing some amusing results: this list of 10 Signs you’re watching an Aaron Sorkin show is dead on. (EW)
  • As is this supercut of recycled Sorkin dialogue. (Buzzfeed)
  • File this under: things I wish didn’t interest me. (Refinery 29)
  • A musical based on Cher’s life could actually be kind of great. (Flavorwire)
  • What a nice dad. (The Daily What)

 

Posted on June 26th, 2012 3 Comments

Viva la Rika

Paris is telling a bright and beautiful story this morning—as opposed to the chilly, dank and wet one it greeted me with upon my arrival yesterday. And although it wasn’t my idea of fun to slog through the driving rain picking up groceries and running other basic errands, it was also hard to get too worked up, because: Paris! The apartment where I’m staying is literally right across the street from the Seine, and if  you stand out on the (charming old) balcony  you’ve got a perfect view of the Eiffel Tower. So happy to discover I’m not too jaded to think that’s really cool. Also, there’s a washer/dryer, which isn’t nothing.

But before we get going, let’s wrap up Amsterdam. My rule when traveling is to try to hit spots that only carry things you can’t get at home, which  has become—as my stroll through the city’s Nine Streets neighborhood became clear—increasingly challenging. But when I saw the storefront above, I sensed possibility.

Maison Rika is a cute, bright boutique overseen by designer/proprietress Ulrika Lundgren , a very cool girl of a certain age whose line is called Rika and who turns out to be kind of a big deal. Today—and, one senses, many days—she was hanging out and feeling chatty.  The store that houses her accessories and clothing line is across the street; this is mostly for home goods, a few of her scarves and bags and jewelry by local designers. Also: she runs a guest house upstairs.

Which of course she was only too kind to show us. We walked up this exceedingly steep staircase…

…until we got to this amazing second-floor room. Was I not just saying how much I love black, white and yellow? (Okay, so the accents here might veer a bit more gold, but still.) Also: that wicker chair! Ulrika found it at a flea market. Which of course she did, because she’s the kind of person who totally would find a piece that perfect at a flea market. Back downstairs, Ulrika said we had to go to her friend’s restaurant for dinner and made a reservation for us. And then it was across the street.

Rika’s whole thing is stars, and I love a good star print.  I’m not entirely sure the cheeky cool of this quilted bag is coming through, but it was rather amazing in person.

I’m already kicking myself for not buying this white canvas tote with little star studs.

And while I know these were probably a touch butch for me,  I might also regret not having purchased them too. Check out the perforations: they’re actually itsy stars. How great is that?

Okay guys, I’m off until later.  Time to weigh in with your suggestions: where  must I absolutely go now that I’m in Paris?

Posted on June 25th, 2012 9 Comments

Morning links

Posted on June 22nd, 2012 10 Comments

Hello Amsterdam

Karma came along and smacked me in the face yesterday for every time I’ve felt superior to, irked by, or just plain amused at the sight of all the European tourists who stumble cluelessly through my especially tricky corner of the West Village, maps and Time Out New York city guides in hand. Because I could not have more totally been one of them, right down to the Time Out city guide, and probably taking a lot more wrong turns.

Happily, Amsterdam isn’t a bad place to get lost. You can be perfectly content taking in both the beauty of the city itself as well as its inhabitants: the baseline level of attractiveness here is very high. As for all the famously large population of bicyclists: bikes are like cars here, and the people on them speed through the streets and you stay the hell out of their way. It makes me really fear for the possibility of  bicycling catching on in New York, where the majority of  people on bikes are less inclined to obey traffic laws or be polite, and far more inclined to deploy the moral high ground as a weapon. A toxic mix.

 

Anyhoo, although wandering took a backseat to shopping yesterday, I did manage to hit  Sprmrkt, which is one of the city’s more avant stores, all muted colors and drapey, sometimes intentionally tattered pieces that wrap and hang in ways that make you wonder if you’re wearing them wrong.  I kind of loved it. It’s located in a huge, warehouse-like space that could—if you took out all of the racks—double as the site where the party episode of Girls was filmed.

I’m never one to pass up a well-merchandized  cosmetics store, and was therefore powerless against the pull of Skins when I saw it, beckoning in all its clean and well-lit glory. Inside there weren’t a whole lot of surprises—a bunch of boutique luxury brands we can get at home, but a carefully chosen assortment: Juliette Has A Gun candles, Dr. Brandt, Creed.

But I did find these amazing Fornasetti candles, which I have never seen anywhere. I’ve got a thing for black, white and yellow lately, and went nuts for this.

Here’s one that’s more textbook Fornasetti. I’m dying to get one, but they’re very expensive. For some reason, they don’t sell them on the Skins site (I hate when stores do that, and can’t tell you how many times lately it’s prevented me from showing you great stuff).  I did find links for the two you see here, if you’re feeling flush.

Thanks for the various tips about places to visit, guys. I’m heading out soon. Time will tell if I can navigate my way to any of them.

*“Hello Amsterdam” is actually a song by the amusing, sad and caustic 90s indie-pop singer-songwriter Mark Eitzel. Spotify it some time if you’re in the mood.

Posted on June 22nd, 2012 4 Comments